Bonhams is to hold its first sale dedicated exclusively to the street artist Banksy. Running on bonhams.com from now until 29 June, Banksy Online Sale, will bring together an exceptional number of much-sought-after prints by the artist, including Girl with Balloon (£120,000-180,000) and Laugh Now (£70,000 – 100,000), amongst others. Leading the sale will be Love is in the Air, a screenprint in colours from 2003, which has an estimate of £300,000 – 500,000.
Head of Sale, Laetitia Guillotin commented: “Bonhams was the first ever auction house to offer works by Banksy in 2003 and has achieved some of the most amazing results for Banksy since, regularly setting world auction records for his prints. We’re very excited to present here a survey of the graphic work by this guerrilla artist and global phenomenon. It is a thrill to be able to offer a curated selection of some of the most important subjects and iconic images from one of the world’s most famous street artists.”
Banksy is one of the most popular and provocative figures in contemporary culture. Having risen from the streets of Bristol to global prominence in the 1990s, the identity of the man behind the moniker remains a mystery. His breakthrough exhibition Turf Wars in Hackney in 2003 quickly made the elusive Banksy an international sensation. In 2005, his painting of children playing on the West Bank wall in Bethlehem went viral, and the following year his Barely Legal exhibition in Los Angeles turned into a star-studded event. Banksy’s prints chart the development of a visual vocabulary now recognisable around the world. The exceptional selection of signed and unsigned works collected in this sale capture the unforgettable images that continue to gain worldwide media attention: from his award-winning documentary, Exit Through The Gift Shop (2010), his temporary theme park Dismaland (2015) in Weston-super-Mare, his Walled Off Hotel (2017) in Bethlehem, to his partnership with Stormzy to create a Union Jack bulletproof vest for his headline Glastonbury performance (2019) – Banksy never fails to provoke.
Highlights of the sale include:
- Banksy (Born 1974), Love is in the Air. Screenprint in colours, 2003, on wove paper, signed in black ink, numbered 10/500 in pencil (only the first fifty in the edition were signed, alongside an additional 27 signed artist’s proofs). Estimate: £300,000-500,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Girl with Balloon. Screenprint in colours, 2004, numbered 27/600 in pencil. Estimate: £120,000-180,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Choose Your Weapon (Bright Purple). Screenprint in colours, 2010, on wove paper, signed in pink crayon and numbered 11/25. Estimate: £100,000 – 150,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Pulp Fiction. Screenprint in colours, 2003, on heavy wove paper, signed and dated in felt-tip pen, numbered 30/150 in pencil. Estimate: £70,000 – 100,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Flying Copper. Screenprint in colours, 2004, on wove paper, signed, dated and numbered 69/150 in pencil. Estimate: £70,000-90,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Nola (White). Screenprint in colours, 2008, on wove paper, signed and numbered 176/289 in pencil. Estimate: £70,000 – 100,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), Laugh Now. Screenprint in colours, 2004, on wove paper, signed and dated in black ink, numbered 85/150 in pencil. Estimate: £70,000 – 100,000.
- Banksy (Born 1974), No Ball Games (Grey). Screenprint in colours, 2009, on wove paper, signed and numbered 66/250 in pencil. Estimate: £60,000 – 80,000.